The term “acupuncture” is a combination of two Latin words: “acus”, meanding “needle”, and “punctura”, meaning “puncture”. The term “acupressure” combines the word for “needle” and the word “pressura”, meaning “pressure”.
Although acupuncture is practiced in many areas of the world, the earliest records of its use appear in China, about 2600 B.C. Its use became common there after Laotse (born in 604 B.C.) incorporated it into the religion he founded call Taoism. In more recent times, it spread to France via Indo-China, and began to gain acceptance in Europe. Widespread interest in eastern religions during the 1960’s led to an increase in its use and acceptance in the United States.
The theories of acupuncture are based on the concept of yin and yang, an Oriental philosophy (also prevalent in the New Age movement) which sees the human body, as well as the entire universe, as existing only as a balance is achieved between the positive force of good and life (yang) and the negative force of evil and death (yin). Any imbalance results in disease and illness.
Acupuncture uses needles, inserted at various points on the human body, to restore the balance and therefore health. There are 365 of these points, one for each day of the year, and they are divided along 12 meridians. These 12 meridians were established to correspond to the 12 signs of the zodiac used in astrology, which the Bible condemns along with witchcraft. Acupressure uses the same philosophy, the same points and meridians. It simply substitutes pressure, applied either by the practioner’s fingers or an inanimate object, for puncture with needles.
It is interesting to note that as these ideas and procedures spread in Africa and from there to the Caribbean and South America, they were changed from something that began as a way to heal into a way to destroy. In the practice of voodoo, the use of pins inserted into dolls representing the ones to be harmed is a vicarious application of the same principles. Balance is disrupted rather than being restored.
Does acupuncture work? If so, how? There is no doubt that in some cases acupuncture does provide relief from pain, even to the point of anesthetizing a patient sufficiently for surgery. However, some people seem to be unaffected by its application. The scientific community has no clear-cut answer. However, there seems to be a consensus that the primary force behind it is a form of waking hypnosis, or mind control. The stronger a person’s inclination to accept authority, or authority figures, controlling him, the better hypnotic subject he makes. This would account for the fact that it is more widely used, with greater success, in Oriental cultures, with their strong emphasis on respect for elders, the good of the community above the good of the individual, etc.
Acupuncture is a form of healing which has its roots in pagan philosophies and astrology and which apparently works through hypnotism and mind control. As such, it is not an appropriate recourse for the Christian, who should seek healing only in ways pleasing to God. (This article was reprinted from the November/December 1990 issue of Voices From His Excellent Glory).
Refereces: Larson’s New Book of Cults, Bob Larson, Tyndale House, 1982. 1974 Britannica Yearbook of Science and the Future, ed. David Calhoun.
1988 Encyclopaedia Britannica, Two Be One (out of print), Ernest H.J. Steed, Logos International, 1978).
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